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Kolkata Kings Win Season 4 of Poker Sports League For ₹72 Lakhs!

Kolkata Kings Named the Poker Sports League Season 4 Champions
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  • Attreyee Khasnabis April 26, 2022
  • 5 Minutes Read

Season 4 of the Poker Sports League wrapped up on Saturday, with Kolkata Kings, led by captain Shardul Parthasarathi lifting the trophy and winning ₹72 Lakhs and an additional success fee awarded to the players. The defending champions Deccan Aces came second, collecting ₹48 Lakhs in prize money.

The five-week-long season was the first time the league was held in the ‘Phygital’ format and ended on April 23, with the Grand Finale taking place onboard Casino Deltin Royale in Goa. All the action was live-streamed on the OTT platform VOOT.

 

This is the first time Kolkata Kings have won the PSL title. The team finished runner-up in Season 1 (then known as Kolkata Royal) and came third in Season 3.

After the Grand Finals, Pranav Bagai, CEO and Founder of the Poker Sports League, said, “We are thrilled to have witnessed and hosted such a remarkable season. We want to thank our partners, Fairplay News, Adda 52, and Deltin Royale, for extending their support and making this season a grand success. We are grateful to all the team owners and the players who displayed inspiring gameplays and gave their 100%. The season was truly a testament to India’s burgeoning poker industry as it was packed with surprises, vigor, and inspiring gameplay. We congratulate the winners and hope that the players had an immersive and a stimulating experience overall.”

Pranav Bagai
Pranav Bagai

 

PSL Season 4 was powered by Fairplay News, with Adda52 being the online partner, while Deltin Royale was the league’s venue partner.

Kolkata Kings, owned by PokerDangal co-founders Kunal Gupta, Karan Gandhi, and Varun Puri, featured Team Captain Shardul Parthasarathi, Team Pro Ashish Ahuja, and PokerGuru Ambassador Ankit Wadhawan, Niharika Bindra, Vinayak Bajaj, along with six qualifiers namely, Mohit Bohra, Rishit Kumar, Payal Sharma, Shane Oswald Hodges, and Ashish Mudgil. Pulkit Pandey was the substitute player, and Priya Agarwal was the Wild Card.

Kolkata Kings topped the PSL Season 4 charts with 65,800 points. Young Gun Shardul Parthasarathi, who captained the team to victory, talking about his team’s effort, said, “We never really considered our team to be weak, honestly. I think we had a decently good team on paper. I think there were 2-3 guys I didn’t know about during the auction, but the rest were all players I knew of. We had sessions taken by Ashish (Ahuja), Ankit (Wadhawan), and myself, which really helped the team, especially the qualifiers. Everyone on the team did their bit and more! I didn’t have to motivate anyone as everyone was self-motivated. We had a commanding lead in the virtual format and came second in the live one, and Ashish did a splendid job closing it out in the finale for us!”

Shardul Parthasarathi
Shardul Parthasarathi

 

Kolkata Kings Team Pro, PokerGuru Ambassador Ashish Ahuja, who won the Grand Finale for the team, added, “I would like to give credit to the entire team as everyone scored points in the virtual and live format, which gave us a healthy chip advantage over all the teams in the grand finale.”

Ashish Ahuja
Ashish Ahuja

 

Elaborating on the heads-up against Deccan Aces, Ahuja added, “The heads-up with Deccan Aces was pretty exciting. We had a healthy 2.5:1 chip lead over Deccan when the heads-up began. We utilized our chip lead, put max pressure, and eventually took it down.”

 

PSL Season 4 Recap

Season 4 commenced on March 29 with the same six teams as last season, namely Kolkata Kings, Gujarat Falcons, Delhi Czars, Deccan Aces, Mumbai Anchors, and Goan Nuts. Not only did this season mark the comeback of the PSL to the live felts, but it was also the first time the league was held in a ‘Phygital’ format with a mix of online and live matches. All six teams were competing for a share of the ₹2 Crores prize payouts.

Mind Sports League, the parent company of the PSL, had announced Season 4 last October. While the season was initially slated to take off in February, a fresh outburst of COVID-19 cases across the country forced them to postpone the dates. Following the quarter-finals in February (15,17,19), 36 of the 180 Online Qualifiers were given a seat in the six PSL teams at the Selection Ceremony on March 5.

While the online qualifiers and Virtual League matches for Season 4 were hosted on the Hashtag Poker App, the Final Qualifiers were held on Adda52.

The Phygital league began with the Virtual League Matches on Adda52, live-streamed on VOOT.

A total of 18 matches were played across three weeks in different categories, namely, Qualifiers, Women, Pros, Wildcard, Captains, Owners, and six Multi-Table tournaments. The action played down to the Grand Finale in Goa from April 20 to 23.

 

Kolkata King’s Ride to Victory

Here is a quick look at the team’s headline moments through PSL – Season 4:

> Ashish Ahuja ranked second in the Pro Match 1 held on March 29, which was won by Gujarat Falcons’ Shashank Jain

> Vinayak Bajaj ranked second in the Leaderboard MTT (A) held on April 2. Deccan Aces’ Ishita Arora topped the Leaderboard standings.

> Ashish Mudgil won the 36-Player Deepstack MTT (B) on April 2

> Rishit Kumar won the Qualifier Match 4 on April 6

> Mohit Bohra won the Qualifier Match 5 on April 7

> Niharika Bindra won the Female Match on April 8, topping the PSL – Season 4 Female Leaderboard

> Vinayak Bajaj won the Qualifier Match 6 on April 11

> Shardul Parthasarathi won the Captain’s Match on April 12

> By April 12, Kolkata Kings had climbed to the top of the Team Leaderboard standings with 33,200 points

> Karan Gandhi won the Owners Match Main Event MTT-A on April 16

> Mohit Bohra won the SNG 2 live in Goa on April 21

 

Kolkata Kings started as chip leaders in the Grand Finale, with a starting stack of 1,00,000, followed by Deccan Aces (55,000) and Mumbai Anchors (55,0000).

Ahuja eliminated Romit Advani of Gujarat Falcons’ in sixth place, knocking the team out of contention.

Mumbai Anchors eliminated Delhi Czars in fifth place, and Kolkata Kings’ Ashish Ahuja busted Mumbai Anchors’ member and his PokerGuru Staking stablemate, Laksh Pal Singh, in fourth place to take over a 5-to-1 chip lead. Soon, the Goan Nuts were sent out of contention in third place, setting up the heads-up match between the Kolkata Kings and Deccan Aces.

In the final hand of the tournament, Ahuja was all-in with against Deccan Aces’ Vaibhav Sharma’s . The board ran , and just like that, Kolkata Kings won the PSL Finale.

While Kolkata Kings were declared the PSL Season 4 champions, Goan Nuts’ Arjun Singh (18,575 points) was felicitated as the Player of the Series (POS), and Deccan Aces’ Ishita Arora (10,925 points) was named the Woman of the Series.

 

Talking about the team’s win, the Kolkata Kings team co-owner Karan Gandhi said, “It’s a wonderful feeling that the team has taken it down. The team took a lot of effort, and as Kunal Patni pointed out, there are a lot of newcomers, and I am happy that each of them performed well.”

Karan Gandhi
Karan Gandhi

Kunal Patni, Team Captain of the runner-up Deccan Aces, congratulating the winning team, underlined how the Kolkata Kings were considered the weakest among the six competing teams, but they proved everyone wrong. “To be very frank, from the time teams were selected, everyone believed Kolkata Kings to be the weakest team on paper. But they played consistently well, both online and live, throughout the league. They deserve every bit of the victory.”

Kunal Patni
Kunal Patni

 

He explained further, “We all thought their qualifiers were the weakest, but obviously, we were proven wrong.”

It was a fantastic season for the PSL, and the poker community now eagerly awaits the announcement for the next season.

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